22 of the Best Things to do in Donegal on an Adventure-Packed 3-Day Road Trip (Full Itinerary)

Day #3 – Forts, Panoramic Views and so Much More

So we’re on to our final lap of the road trip as we move into day 3.

Today, we’re looking to check out as much as possible before we have to wrap up the road trip.

If you can, get up early and enjoy the sunrise from your bed and then get on the road nice and early.

Stop #1 – Grianan of Aileach

Portsalon Luxury Camping to Grianan of Aileach – 1-hour drive

The Grianan of Aileach is a hillfort that sits on top of the 801 ft high Greenan Mountain at Inishowen.

According to these lads, the stone fort is said to date back to the 1st century on the site of an early Iron Age multivallate hillfort.

The Grianan of Aileachis a hillfort atop the 244 metres high Greenan Mountain at Inishowen in Ireland. The main structure is a stone ringfort, thought to have been built by the Northern Uí Néill, in the sixth or seventh century, although there is evidence that the site had been in use before the fort was built. . . 📷 All rights and credits reserved for respective owners @tomarcherphoto . . #travel #nature #naturelovers #natureonly #nature_shooters #natureperfection #naturestyles #powerofnature #naturephotography #natureobsession #beautifuldestinations #amazingdestinations #naturelovers #naturewalk #natureshots #beautifulnature #breathtakingnature #natureobsession #crystal #perfect #travelstoke #awesomeearth #awakethesoul # #beautifulmoments #inspiredtravel #passport #traveltheworld #explore #ireland #ringfort

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The drive up to Grianan of Aileach is worth the trip alone.

When you reach the top you’ll be treated to a magnificent 360 view that takes in Lough Swilly, Lough Foyle and the gorgeous countryside of the Inishowen Peninsula.

Stop #2 – Dunree Head

Grianan of Aileach to Fort Dunree Military Museum – 40-minute drive

Our second stop of the day takes us to Dunree Head to check out Dunree Fort and the military museum.

The Museum is positioned in a wonderful setting that overlooks Lough Swilly on the on the Inishowen Peninsula.

There are several weather-beaten barracks which you can have a gander at and if you fancy along with an audiovisual presentation.

Stop #3 – Mamore Gap

Dunree Head to Mamore Gap – 15 minutes drive

If you’ve never visited Mamore Gap before, then you’re in for a treat.

Found on the Inishowen Peninsula this immensely scenic drive twists and turns through the gap along a steep route.

mamore gap in donegal
Photo via Failte Ireland

It’s hard not to admire the sheep and cyclists battling their way up the steep hillsides as your car (mine did anyway) struggles against the incline.

Once you reach the summit of Mamore Gap it’ll immediately become evident why this is one of the best things to do in Donegal.

The view from the top is one of those scenes that paints itself upon your mind forever.

Wild. Remote. Unspoiled. Mamore Gap will take your breath away.

Ever wanted to check out the Northern Lights? Did you know you can see them light up the sky above Donegal? Click here for more info and tonnes of photos.

Stop #4 – Glenevin Waterfall

Mamore Gap to Glenevin Waterfall – 13-minute drive

The first time I laid eyes upon Glenevin Waterfall it mustered up images in my mind of the first Jurassic Park movie.

The waterfall looks like something that you’d find on a prehistoric island from a land that time forgot.

Glenevin Waterfall donegal
Photo via Failte Ireland

Once you’ve parked the car, you’re around a 15 minute walk that’ll take you along a lovely pathway that’s surrounded by trees.

Glenevin Waterfall is well worth adding to your road trip itinerary.

Stop #5 – Malin Head

Glenevin Waterfall to Malin Head – 31-minute drive

Our next stop takes us to Malin Head – the most northerly point of the island of Ireland.

After visiting Malin Head recently, the one thing that hit me, and that stuck with me long after my visit, was the sheer power of mother nature.

malin head drone shot
Photo © The Irish Road Trip

As I stood and gazed out at the jagged rocks that jutted from the water nearby, I was half deafened from the whistle of the gales that whipped over the Atlantic coupled with the sound of water crashing against rock.

There are several walks you can do here – the road walk to Banbas crown is roughly 12km and will take you around 5 hours depending on fitness levels.

As you explore Malin head, keep an eye out for a large ‘EIRE’ on the ground nearby, written out in white stones to remind aircraft that they were flying over a neutral state during the war.

Stop #6 – Kinnagoe Bay

Malin Head to Kinnagoe Bay – 40-minute drive

Our 3-day road trip wraps up at the gorgeous Kinnagoe Bay.

We’ve visited many a great beach over the past few days, and this one is the icing on the cake.
kinnagoe bay donegal
Photo by Chris Hill via Failte Ireland

You can view the bay from the road above or take a walk down to the sand and finish off your road trip in style.

And that's a wrap
And that’s it – 3 action-packed days filled with the best things to do in Donegal. If there’s anything you feel should be added, or if you’ve any other comments, leave them in the comment section below.